Soccer mom’s invention has nutritional ring to it

By: Rich Fisher
   You can buy the sharpest car on the lot, polish it, get it detailed and put the slickest tires you can find underneath it. But if you don’t put in the right gas, change the oil and check the fluids, it won’t get you very far.
   It’s the same with the human body. Athletes can do all the weight training and running they want, but if they do not ingest the right food and liquids at the proper times, they won’t get maximum performance from that well sculpted form.
   Thus, Monroe soccer mom Vickie Rosenberg wants to help young players learn how to get an edge when it comes to proper eating and drinking. Rosenberg has developed what she calls the NRGRing, which is a nutritional energy guide for youth soccer players to attach to their soccer bag, water bottle handle or key ring. The ring gives soccer players nutritional information in a convenient and easy-to-understand manner.
   There are seven double-sided, round, plastic weather durable cards that are four inches in diameter, that are all on a three-inch metal attachment ring. A quick glance at a card will help a soccer player understand what to eat and when to eat it.
   As for the name itself, the letters NRG stand for Nutrition + Refueling = Go! Or, when spoken quickly, the letters are the same as "energy." And that’s what this is all about.
   "It helps the player fuel for performance with foods that will aid their energy and endurance levels," Rosenberg said. "It goes another step, and gives specific information regarding what time of day the game is played"
   The cards cover nutritional tips for the following situations: early a.m. games; early p.m. games, late p.m. games; one hour before game; halftime recharge; after game recovery, hydration is the key, soccer bag snacks, tournament time, and convenience store items.
   "The pre-game meal, according to nutrition specialists, made up of carbs and proteins, turn into energy in two or three hours," Rosenberg said. "Years ago, a coach said before a game to have a big pasta meal, but this takes it beyond that.
   "It tells you how to use sports drinks to your best advantage, when they should be used."
   Rosenberg and her husband, Dr. Jerry Rosenberg, have been involved with youth soccer for the past 20 years. Both are licensed soccer coaches who played the game as youths. Son Ryan, 28, and daughter Annie, 13, both play soccer and the Rosenbergs have organized successful soccer tournaments in Monroe for over 12 years.
   A few years ago, Vickie read about the deaths of several NFL players in training camp, caused by dehydration. It got her thinking.
   "It bothered me that someone could die of dehydration on the field," she said. "As a soccer mom, a year-and-a-half ago I started learning about dehydration and in that search for information, I met some extremely knowledgeable people."
   One of those persons was Gloria Averbuch, an author of nine books on exercise, health and fitness. Three of Averbuch’s books were on youth soccer, and her latest work is It’s Not About the Bra, written with World Cup star Brandi Chastain.
   "Gloria worked with me on this, she thought it was a fabulous idea," Rosenberg said. "For the next year we worked on nutritional information; and from that I worked on the device itself, the ring and the plastic cards. My son is a graphic designer, we designed a packaging product and had it sent to the U.S. patent office. There is nothing else like it in the country."
   There is a patent pending on the product. The utility patent was recently filed and takes a year-and-a-half to finalize, but Rosenberg is already selling her product. She hopes to expand into other activities, such as basketball, football, tennis, baseball, cheerleader and dance.
   "The sports are endless because the product is simple and needed," she said.
   As for now, Rosenberg is just promoting the soccer ring. She has "made friends from California to Quebec" and has sent NRGRings out to coaches of all levels throughout the country. One coach bought a bunch right off the truck
   "We want them to look at it, give it a test drive," Rosenberg said. "I’m hoping the word of mouth comes out positive.
   "I would like to go national with this. The people working with us are nationally known and I was lucky enough to meet them by chance. They really believed in the product and in my drive to push it through. It makes me feel justified that it’s not just a stupid little product, but something that’s needed."
   In these early stages, Rosenberg is delighted with the feedback NRGRing is getting. She can not stress enough the importance of maintaining the right diet, which does not include so many of the fashionable low-carb foods.
   "The last thing a soccer player or athlete needs to reduce is carbs and protein," she said. "Soccer players are calorie burning machines and need to fuel properly in order to play their best.
   "We give them great training in technical skills, speed and agility, along with expensive equipment and uniforms. Then they go to a tournaments and say ‘Mom, I want cheesy fries and soda’ during the middle of two back-to-back games in 90-degree heat. And mom buys it.
   "My product will help the soccer moms, as well as the athletes themselves understand the choices that will help them play their best. Then, after the tournament . . . go for the cheesy fries."
   The cost of NRGRing is $9.99 apiece. Further information can be found by logging onto, or by e-mailing [email protected].